If the twelve students in my kindergarten class had a little pep in their step at the end of the day today, it was because they were sucking energy directly from me. Seriously, I’m tired. Who knew a few hours of herding five year olds could be so exhausting?
Oh, but it was fun. I was right about that. If I close my eyes, I can see those sweet cherub faces–so excited and nervous and mischievous and funny–and hear those sweet piping voices–asking question after question and bursting ardently in on my explanation of the short “i” sound to tell me all about the soft, fuzzy chicks they hatched in their preschool class last year.
It was chaotic, to be sure. I imagine first days usually are. There were parents to meet and supplies to collect and classroom rules to explain, and half of my carefully laid lesson plans went out the window in the dizzying rush of first day duties. But there was also story time in the reading corner, where twelve pairs of eyes gazed with rapt attention at the same book and the hush of waiting for the unraveling of the next written word wrapped around us like the calm eye of a storm. There was laughter and there were hugs, and I know that there will be more of both tomorrow.
I’m only beginning to know their names and their faces, but already I am praying for them, and praying that I’ll find the wisdom, patience, and knowledge to be the teacher they need this year. After all, I’m the only one they get.
You know what? I just realized that I still remember my kindergarten teacher…
Thank you, Mrs. Edmundson, wherever you are. (And I was telling the truth. I really didn’t let that stray cat into the building on purpose.)